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Computer

For the past couple of years, UNICEF Uganda and partners have been designing, developing, prototyping and rolling out youth-focused community computers that can operate on mains power where available, or solar-power in remote rural areas. Work has just finished on the design of the second generation Digital Kiosk, and the UK's fanless computer specialist Aleutia is now working on a new open source, low power computer system to squeeze into the table-topped repurposed oil drum that will become the Digital Drum. Read More

HMS Ocean is already the largest vessel in the British Royal Navy, so to help lighten ship, BAE Systems and Ministry of Defence is deploying a new system on the helicopter carrier that hosts software across multiple systems from a single console. Read More

From full Windows machines to Chromeboxes, there’s a fair bit of choice if you’re looking for a small form factor desktop PC in 2014. Shuttle’s latest effort, the DSA2LS distinguishes itself by opting for Google’s Android operating system, while providing low-end specs and good connectivity. Read More
The web would be a much more secure place if not for the vulnerability built right into a common coding practice: pasted-together strings of database commands (usually for either SQL queries or JavaScript-enabled user interactions), which could be exploited for malicious purposes. But computer scientists at Carnegie Mellon are developing a programming language specifically intended to protect computers and websites from such threats. Read More
Back in January, French startup Keecker made a bit of a CES splash with a cute and curvy home entertainment computer capable of moving around on its own or as instructed by an app-based remote, and transforming any wall, door or ceiling into a huge projected screen. Gizmag dropped in on the company's Paris home at the weekend for a chat with CEO and Founder Pierre Lebeau, and a one-on-one with the multi-talented Keecker prototype. Read More
Just like with previous versions, once you've had your Windows 8 computer for a while, chances are it will become unstable or not be as sprightly as it once was. That's when a little clean up might be on order to return it to its former glory. Here's how to use the PC Refresh feature to reclaim the speed and stability the computer once had and not lose your personal files. This article will also show you how to make PC Refresh (and Reset) work if you receive a common error message. Read More
Until recently, computer software animation developers had to manipulate characters by using their computer mouse to drag virtual limbs into poses one tedious, time-consuming key frame at a time. Now researchers at the Interactive Geometry Lab (IGL) at ETH Zurich have developed a whole new way of creating movement in virtual characters using 3D model "joysticks" that directly create shape and movement inputs. Read More
Many robots today are able to follow verbal instructions. However, the robot first has to be programmed with software code that allows it to respond to those instructions in some predetermined way, and that software must be added to every time the robot's task list is enhanced. Wouldn’t it be easier if we could just avoid all that messy fiddling about with software and talk to a machine as we would a human and explain what we wanted it to do? Researchers at Cornell University thought so, that’s why they designed and built a learning robot as part of their "Tell me Dave" project. Read More
Word-picture association is one of the basic mechanisms of human memory. As children, it helps us to learn language by verbalizing what we see, as adults it is an invaluable aid to visualizing broader concepts or perhaps helping those with an LBLD (Language-Based Learning Disability). Now researchers from the University of Washington and the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence have created the first fully automated computer program named LEVAN that teaches itself everything there is to know about a visual concept by associating words with images. Read More
It might be time to start being nicer to your laptop, because researchers at the University of Reading are claiming that a supercomputer program has passed the Turing Test for the first time in history. On Saturday, at the Turing Test 2014 organized by the University of Reading’s School of Systems Engineering, the chatbot Eugene Goostman reportedly convinced the judges 33 percent of the time that it was a human being and not a computer. Read More
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